Edward O’Dwyer

At that point came the first signs 
of tears on their way, and all 
there was for her to do was to stand up 
and to turn away 

from the rabble of other voices, 
all the clanking and rattling coming from the kitchen, 
the ding of the till drawer closing, 

face out the window of the café, 
look through the couldn’t-be-bothered weather, 
through the lunchtime crowds, 

once, and again, and again, gaining the water’s edge, 
passing through lush Dutch fields, 
past their waving windmills, 

around Azerbaijani oil rigs, 
through the syrupy air pollutions of Indian cities 

and then out over more water, to another land’s edge,
an exotic stretch of beach, her boyfriend there, 
his hair grown longer, wavier, 
a lighter shade now, one not unlike the sand, 

the sun beating down 
as he applies a generous squirt of sun cream 
to the bronzed back and shoulders 
of a girl that went to her school,

that she never got on with, 
with whom, though nothing really happened, 
there was a tension she couldn’t quite put a finger on.

Page 32, Poetry Ireland Review Issue 119
Issue 119

Poetry Ireland Review Issue 119:

Edited by Vona Groarke

Poetry Ireland Review Issue 119 includes new poems by 48 poets including Frank Ormsby, John Kinsella, Rachel Coventry, Aifric Mac Aodha, Gerald Dawe, Alice Miller and Claire Potter. Also included are translations by Richard Begbie and Kirsten Lodge, an essay on Bishop, Lowell, Heaney and Grennan by David McLoghlin, and reviews of Paul Muldoon, Paul Durcan, Sarah Clancy, Medbh McGuckian, Kate Tempest, George the Poet, and many more. The issue also features photography by Hugh O'Conor, Dominic Turner, Sheila McSweeney, Fergus Bourke and John Minihan.